Thursday, December 25, 2008

Seventy year old concrete

When I got up this morning, my body told me it wanted to jog instead of walk. I attempted to consult with my knee, but it refused to join the conversation. So I did jog, but made a point of slowing down my pace. It was a productive session and my knees feel good.

After jogging, walking back from the lake, I noticed a stamp in the sidewalk, giving the date the concrete was laid and the name of the contractor. 1937. A few hours later when I walked back from the store, I collected a few more dates from the concrete: 1931, 1939, etc. I also collected names from utility access covers and plates, including venerable companies that no longer exist. These older markers of industry were still in good shape after all these years, looking like they had endured only a few short years of wear. The newer, anonymous ground works showed more wear, and would not outlast their older brethren. So it goes.

There is one thing that surprised me in my recent conversation with Rol. I told him of some looming financial trouble. He expressed the proper sympathy. I replied that it would be all right. No matter how bad the financial thing got I would still "be breathing and working and happy." The part about being happy surprised me, even as the words came out of my mouth. Sitting there thinking about it, I realized that things might get bad for a while. But there was nothing to take away my joy except myself. I will have to meditate on this for a few days, than act on the realization.

It is Christmas, I am not Christian, but I enjoy the non-commercial trappings of the holiday season. I was going to spend the day in austere behaviour and headspace, but changed my mind. I walked to the store down down the street and came back with Christmas Ale, chocolate and the makings for a beef stew. The chocolate will last as long as it lasts, the stew project will begin within the hour, and one bottle of the Ale has found a home. Life is good. Yes, life is interesting and worrisome, but it is still good.

When I first arrived in Oakland I found a wrapped gift Melinda had left for me. I unwrapped it this morning. It is the graphic novel Digger by Ursula Vernon.

"The Cross is a barren stick, and the petals of the Rose fall and decay; but the union of the Cross and the Rose is a constant succession of new lives." - Crowley

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